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Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) are turning 40. But instead of celebrating, they're mired in a mid-life crisis with unruly kids, debt and unhappiness mounding. Pete's record label is failing and Debbie is unable to come to terms with her aging body. As Pete's 40th birthday party arrives, Pete and Debbie are going to have to rely on family, friends, employees, fitness trainers, aging rockers and ultimately each other to come to terms with life at age 40. Written by
The main characters from "Knocked Up", Ben (Seth Rogen) and Alison (Katherine Heigl), do not appear in this "sort-of sequel", but references to both characters are made: A picture of Alison can be seen on the wall and Pete plays Scrabble on his iPad with Ben and later mentions getting marijuana cookies from Ben. Three other, more minor characters from Knocked Up, do appear in this movie as well: Charlyne Yi's character Jodi (an amiable stoner in Knocked up; now an employee in Debbie's store), Jason Segel's character Jason (one of Ben's best friends with a crush on Debbie in Knocked Up; now Debbie's personal trainer) and Tim Bagley reprises his role as OB/GYN Dr. Pellagrino. See more »
When Pete and Debbie drive back from the hotel, the gear selector of the car shows that the car is in "P", while they are driving. See more »
I don't want to shop at old lady stores. I don't want to go to J. Jill and Chico's and Ann Taylor.
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After the main credits roll, there's an extended alternate take of Catherine ad-libbing insults during the conversation with the Julie, Pete, and Debbie. See more »
The supporting characters of "Knocked Up" (2007) have matured. Married couple Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) are turning 40. This does not mean that writer, director Judd Apatow has matured. It's a bit more of a dramedy than some of his other comedic adventures but it's still his typical low-brow humour spread out for over two hours. The characters are older, more assured in who they are, but their responses to life are less cultured.
Pete eats too many cupcakes, makes poor business decisions and doesn't tell his wife that they have to sell their house. Debbie obsesses over younger and hotter bodies, nags her husband about their sex life, and takes extreme reactions to every little, or big, thing. Debbie is rude, selfish, inconsiderate, immature and so disconnected from every reasonable woman that there is no humanly possible way to make her likable let alone funny. Pete was slightly better; still selfish, inconsiderate and immature but at least his jokes were just unfunny rather than rude.
The plot, in the loosest sense of that word, has Pete turning 40 and Debbie is going to throw his birthday party, but Pete is pre-occupied with his failing business and Debbie is pre-occupied with hating him. She is also obsessed with getting a tighter body and ogling them on younger women this involves feeling up her young employee (Megan Fox) and hiring a fitness trainer. The main cameo of many returning Apatow players is Jason Segel as the fitness trainer. Why? Because it's supposed to be funny.
Everything in the first two hours or so was done solely for the comedy. Some of it was funny (Pete is played by Paul Rudd after all and there's a small role for Melissa McCarthy), but a lot of it was in the trailer, and most of it was just stupid. It was also at this point, the two-hour mark, that Debbie declares, "All of a sudden, we're a magnet of negativity. What did we do?" Maybe she wasn't watching the movie, but this has been two hours, it's not all of a sudden, and secondly, she is the source of the negativity. This should be the turning point for the film but Debbie still hasn't figured out how horrible of a person she is. That comes later.
Very similar to "The Five-Year Engagement" (2012), another romantic comedy that took way too long to come to its inevitable conclusion, "This is 40" only gets emotionally resonant when the characters finally make the change for the better. Too bad that in this case the characters were too far from redeemable in the first place.
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